Helmand delivered low quality drugs for 2 years
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): Public health officials on Monday said “Afghanistan Training and Development Centre” had been providing “substandard” medicines to hospitals for two years in southern Helmand province in violation of the contract.
Public Health Department official Dr. Ashraf Naderi told Pajhwok Afghan News the centre and the Public Health Ministry had signed a contract on medicine supplies two years back.
Under the contract, the centre would provide best quality medicines to 72 health centres in Helmand. “But when we did a research, it was revealed the centre had supplied low quality drugs to Helmand for two years.”
He said it had not been mentioned in the contract that from which country the medicines should be brought, but pharmacists at the centre were Pakistanis and it was possible they had brought the drugs from there.
He said now it was up to the Public Health Ministry to make a decision in this regard. Naderi also said people were sold substandard medicines in most of hospitals in Helmand province.
Dr. Shehzada Halim, the Afghanistan Training and Development Centre regional representative, told Pajhwok Afghan News that they received the drugs from companies which had been issued licenses by the Public Health Ministry.
“If the pharmaceutical companies had delivered substandard medicines, the responsibility rests with the evaluation group of the Public Health Ministry because we cannot determine the quality of drugs.”
He said they had no responsibility in this regard and the companies importing the drugs should be questioned.
But Public Health Ministry officials said they would make a decision in this regard on receiving a report from the Public Health Department of Helmand province.
Najmuddin, a resident of Lashkargah, who was attending his ailing father at Bost hospital, said patients were given fewer medicines at government-run hospitals in districts compared to privately-run hospitals. “How can a patient improve when the fewer medicine is of low quality as well.”
He said patients were not given proper heed at public sector hospitals and that was why most people took their patients to privately-run hospitals.
Doctors associated with medical charity Doctors Without Borders perform duty in Bost hospital and people say the facility offers good quality medicines.
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